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5 June 2013

Review: 'Love is a Secret' by Sophie King (2013)

Caroline is finding it difficult to trust her husband Roger. Can a marriage really survive an affair? Then a chance meeting makes her wonder if it's time for a fresh start....

Susan is struggling to bring up her disabled daughter Tabitha on her own, and dreams of a better life for them both. But just when it seems things can't get any worse, a knock at the door changes everything.

Mark is learning how to be a single dad while his wife Hilary is away. But as he wrestles with the secrets he is keeping from his family, he's blissfully unaware of the secrets they're keeping from him.

Lisa is looking forward to the birth of her child. Will a new baby help her get over the past? Whatever that is...

Sometimes you have to keep a secret from the one you love - and sometimes you have to keep the one you love a secret.

Thanks to Ian at Corazon Books I received an e-copy of Sophie King’s new novel ‘Love is a Secret’ to review. I was already familiar with some of Sophie King’s work; several years ago I read ‘The Wedding Party’ (2009) and ‘The Supper Club’ (2008), and I enjoyed both books. So, I was quite excited about reading ‘Love is a Secret’ (previously published under the title ‘Mums@Home’) and finding out whether I would still enjoy Sophie King’s writing and ideas!

‘Love is a Secret’ centres around four main characters that all have two things in common: they are all users of the forum ‘Mums Know Best’, which has been set up for mothers around the country as a place to come for advice or just to talk to other parents about their experiences. Next to this, they all have a secret which they are keeping from one another or from the people closest to them... There’s Caroline, who is trying to make her marriage work after she caught her husband Roger cheating on her, but when she meets another man, her whole world is turned upside down. We meet Lisa, who wants nothing more than to have her own baby, but her past continues to get in the way. There’s Mark, who is trying to be a working single dad while his wife Hilary is away from home, but he has some trouble trying to juggle everything at once. And last but not least, there’s Susan who has been used to bringing up her disabled daughter Tabitha all by herself, until suddenly her ex-husband decides to come back into the picture. Within the world of parenting, everyone has their own secrets and things might not be what they initially seem...

I have always had a specific love for novels that focus on more than two characters that tell their own story. I always find it fascinating to find out about these individual tales, and the things that ultimately link these different characters together. So, as soon as I read the blurb of ‘Love is a Secret’, I couldn’t wait to get started and read about Mark, Susan, Caroline and Lisa. I really liked how each chapter was written from a different perspective, and that the novel included four separate storylines which all came together in a way. The characters were well-written and their individual tales were each fascinating and tackled a different aspect of parenting. I specifically liked Caroline and Mark; I thought they were great characters, and I couldn’t wait for their chapters to find out what would happen to them and their families. 

‘Love is a Secret’ is easy to read and I can imagine mums (and dads!) can really relate to the various characters and storylines in this novel. However, as someone without children I also really enjoyed this book and felt myself wanting to read on to find out what was going to happen to the four main characters. The novel didn’t really make me laugh out loud or shed some tears, but I didn’t really miss feeling any kind of strong emotion for a change. Sometimes, it’s nice to just sit down with a lovely book and to be transported to another universe where you can look over the shoulder of other characters and find out how they deal with the cards life has given them. If you are looking for a good, well-written, not too complicated or intense read, then definitely pick up ‘Love is a Secret’!

Rating:7,5 / 10

2 comments:

  1. Sounds like a good read. Sometimes multi-perspectives don't work, but when they do, they really work!

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    1. I have to agree 100%! Thanks for the comment, Hannah! :)

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